The Upper Chamber of National assembly, Senate has set next week Tuesday to pass the N895, 842,465,917 supplementary budget submitted to the National Assembly by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The decision of the Senate was sequel to the passage of the Appropriation bill into second reading and referred to the Senate Committee on Appropriation to report back on Tuesday, June 29.
Buhari had on Tuesday, requested that the Senate should consider and approve the supplementary budget to help fight insecurity and purchase COVID-19 vaccine.
Opening debate on the bill, the Senate Leader, Yahaya Abdullahi said out of the figure, N173, 445, 506, 664 was for recurrent (non-debt) expenditure while the sum of N722, 396, 959, 253 was for contribution to the Development Fund for Capital Expenditure for the year ending on December 31, 2021.
“It is also for treatment of additional 50, 000 patients under the Nigerian Comprehensive Aids Programme in States (NCAPS).
“We propose to fund N45.63 billion of the N83. 56 billion required for the COVID-19 vaccine programme by drawing on existing World Bank loans which will be a structured as well as other grants totalling 113.2 million US dollars.
“The balance of N37. 93 billion required for COVID-19 vaccines, salaries and other health-related expenditures totalling N41.6 billion and N48.2 billion recurrent component of defence and security will be funded by borrowing N135 billion from some special reserve levy accounts.
“We propose to fund the balance of N722.4 billion for capital expenditure on defense and security and capital supplementation from new borrowings in the absence of any supplementary revenue sources,” Abdullahi said adding that it has become necessary to prepare the 2021 supplementary because of its urgency.
Speaking in support of the bill, Sen Emmanuel Bwacha said that since the issues in the budget were not controversial, support should be given for the quick passage of the bill.
Also speaking, Sen Kabiru Barkiya said with the supplementary budget , Nigerian military will be well equipped to tackle insecurity across the country.
“With the supplementary budget, I hope that majority of it will be used for military equipment to fight insecurity and also for staff recruitment, ” he said.
On his part, Sen Adamu Aliero (APC-Kebbi) said: “The country is in severe distress as far as security is concerned.
“The intervention of the Federal Government is timely. Vaccination of Nigerians is below four per cent. It is good adequate provision is made to carter for Nigerians.”
The supplementary budget will help the country carry out an effective COVID-19 vaccination.